CONFLICTING MESSAGES FROM NATO AND EUNovember 30, 2016
As readers here can tell, over this past week I've been largely concentrating on geopolitical stories, particularly those that seem to have been due to blowback and implications from the American presidential election/referendum. In this respect, there are three articles that caught my attention this week, because they are sending out mixed messages. They were shared, respectively, by Mr. E.O., Mr. T.M., and Ms. C:
Let's start with the last article first. Notably, the expressed reason for creating a "pan-European" military is the BREXIT vote, which, as we'll see, is probably nonsense, but a convenient way for the EU globaloney crowd to continue pouting and to strengthen their hand in the difficult negotiations ahead. The real reasons are expressed in the second article, namely, the election of Donald Trump. To be sure, this constitutes another convenient excuse, for the idea of a common European military has been the goal all along. Mr. Trump simple affords an excuse to "speed the process up", as a common military gives a bureaucratic reason and glue to keep the otherwise faltering EU together.
From a strategic point of view, the creation of a European army is necessary, at least, if the EU's pretensions to being the "third way" or "third superpower" between the US and Russia (or, depending on one's lights, China), are to have any weight. With the loss of Great Britain to the project, Europe's sole remaining acknowledged thermonuclear power is France, although most regular readers here are aware that I personally think Germany is also a thermonuclear power, a thing kept relatively quiet by the corporate globalist media, perhaps in the name of political "expediency." More importantly, the European powers individually have neither the strategic depth of a Russia, China, USA or even Brazil, nor do any of them individually have a population base of more than 100 million. If Europe is to project deterrent power of a conventional military nature to any of the powers that do have these things, it simply will require a military on a large population base, and that is only possible with an integrated European military.
The effectiveness of such a military integration, however, is in doubt. It will require integrated armaments industries (a step towards which was taken with recent mergers of French and German armaments concerns in a kind of modern version of a Schneider Creusot-Krupp monster, if one can imagine such a thing; the Airbus consortium of companies already being a framework for potential collaboration in aerospace military matters, and of course there's the "Eurofigher"), but more importantly, a way to manage efficiently the units of so many different nationalities and languages. Think of it as a kind of Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian army, on steroids, probably similarly based on two "official languages", in this case, not German and Hungarian, but rather German and French. And of course, all this will mean further erosions of national sovereignty in Europe, and in the current political climate, that could become very problematic. Does the average Frenchman want decisions for war or peace being made by Brussels bureaucrats, given their track record of abject failure in other areas affecting France? The same could be applied to every other country in the EU. If the EU, conversely, should break up, then one can expect the other European powers, Germany and Italy, to dramatically expand their militaries, and perhaps even to "go nuclear". Already Germany has announced a tripling of its military, regardless of what anyone else, including Brussels, does.
All this occurs amid the backdrop of the first story that appeared in RT, "Russia is not our enemy- NATO Navy Commander", which I find the most interesting, intriguing, and suggestive of them all. Note that these statements were made by NATO's maritime commander, British Royal Navy Vice Admiral Clive Johnstone:
NATO does not see Russia as its enemy but is, rather, trying to “understand” Moscow’s motives and protect its own interests at the same time, the alliance’s Navy Commander, Vice Admiral Clive Johnstone, said at a NATO parliamentary assembly in Istanbul.
“Russia can develop and deploy its fleet to any areas, but NATO does not intend to stop it. Russia is not our enemy and we have no desire to get involved in a new Cold War,” Johnstone said, as cited by the Turkish Anadolu news agency.
“NATO is trying to understand Russia, and not to hurt its own interests at the same time,” he added, stressing that “some Baltic States, which are the NATO members, are meticulous about their territorial waters.”However, the vice admiral went on to accuse Russia of “escalating tensions instead of controlling the situation,” even going so far as to say that Russia is apparently trying to create a new world order.
Meanwhile, Moscow had offered to host a meeting of military experts that would have been dedicated to the issue of security in the Baltic region, but the proposal was rejected by the alliance, Russia’s envoy to NATO, Aleksandr Grushko, said, while noting that the number of flights made by NATO’s military aircraft in the region exceeds that made by Russia’s by many times.
While Vice Admiral Johnstone does accuse Russia of trying to create "a new world order," it is interesting that he stresses Russia is "not the enemy." Any way one reads this, this is a carefully threaded needle, one designed both to placate the anti-Russia hysteria coming out of the American neo-con globaloney crowd, and at the same time, to indicate that perhaps many in the British oligarchy don't think of things in quite the same fashion. When British vice admirals say things like this, I tend to take notice. After all, if anyone has centuries of experience in geopolitical and military matters, it would be the Royal Navy.
Which puts all that European Common Military talk - the Austro-Hungarian Imperial and Royal military on steroids - into an even more intriguing context, for as I've long noted, such a military would be Europe's way of leveraging NATO, and getting out from underneath the thumb of America's decisive policy influence in the organization. And with Trump's election, the pressure is on Europe in any case. Vice Admiral Johnstone's comments, viewed in this context, appear to be saying in carefully couched rhetorical what everyone is already thinking, but afraid to say: NATO's days are numbered.
See you on the flip side...